Help Support the Mr. Imagination Education Studio at Intuit:
The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art

Inspire Children of all Ages to Learn the Power of
Curiosity, Imagination, And Creativity

Material Culture is currently accepting all types of auction-worthy consignments from individuals who are inspired to donate all or part of the proceeds to help create the Mr. Imagination Education Studio at Intuit in Chicago, one of the world’s premier museums of outsider and self-taught art. This invitation extends beyond just art; it encompasses all the categories we regularly auction. Click image to view the virtual catalog. —>

For consignments designated for this project,
Material Culture will waive the seller’s commission for Consignors.

For auction queries, please email or send images/photos to: or call: 215-438-4700
Or visit our Consigning Made Easy page.

The Mr. Imagination Education Studio at Intuit

In 2025, Chicago’s Intuit, one of the world’s premier museums of outsider and self-taught art, will reopen its renovated and expanded facility—a reimagined modern, accessible, world-class museum. For the first time, school field trip activities, teacher professional development and public learning and art-making events will take place in a dedicated classroom studio, tributed to Mr. Imagination.

Mr. Imagination sitting in his “World of Mr. Imagination” room in the midst of his many amazing Creations made from recycled objects, including a bottlecap throne, suit and staff. photo: Ron Gordon

Your support will help one of the world’s leading museums of self-taught art create the Mr. Imagination Education Studio, a dedicated classroom to serve youth, special needs groups, teachers and worldwide audiences beginning in 2025.

All children – in fact, people of all ages, cultures, and coloration – deserve to know that they have the power to change their lives and the lives of their community.  In fact, to change the world. All of us have experienced loss, tragedy or heartbreak in our lives. Despite those experiences, self-taught artists inspirationally and therapeutically display their inborn and intuitive talent for creating powerful art that moves us, connects us, and brings viewers healing and hope.

Mixed Media Sculpture, Gregory “Mr. Imagination” Warmack (1948-2012), sold at Material Culture Auctions for $9750. Ex. Ilene Wood collection.

In loving memory of the late, great conjure man of recycled art, self-taught artist Gregory Warmack (1948-2012), known to the world as Mr. Imagination, Intuit and Material Culture invite you to support building the Mr. Imagination Education Studio dedicated to promoting the imaginative wellsprings of creativity. The Studio will open in early 2025 as part of Intuit’s building renovation and host hands-on artmaking, collaborative projects, inspirational lectures, performance events, and professional development workshops. All of these resources and activities will be dedicated to Mr. Imagination’s ability to make an alternative environment out of the debris of the urban world, a space that stimulates the imagination and promotes the creation of what Mr. I would call a place of “peace and love, joy and hope” designed to motivate the young and old, special needs groups, teachers, and program audiences. That is, all of us who inhabit this strangely amazing world during these often disturbing yet infinitely revelatory times.

From his rebirth as a young man in the 1970s after being shot and left dying, Warmack became, after a visionary flight to ancient Nubian Egypt, a kind of metallic superhero in his Mr. Imagination persona.  He created elaborately adorned industrial sandstone sculptures, often bearing his own features, echoing ancient and royal artifacts. He transformed everyday objects and found materials into elaborate headdresses, totemic scepters, iconic head busts and thrones, as well as a wild multitude of other objects and people. The conventional and discarded became fantastic and surprising. Bottlecaps were transformed into gems.
                                            —Claire Fassnacht, Norman Girardot, Tom Patterson

Tom Patterson recounted a personal story Mr. Imagination had told him:

“While walking the refuse strewn alleys and streets of south Chicago scavenging for inspirational materials to use in his art, he heard the sound ‘psst.’ Looking around he didn’t see anything or anyone. He kept walking in the alleys, and several neighborhood kids started following him, wondering what he was doing and what strange sound he was hearing. Warmack (now speaking as Mr. Imagination) told the kids that the sound was getting louder and louder. The sound went ‘PSST, PSST’ in a way that all should hear, but the kids were unable to hear or make sense of what Mr. Imagination was hearing. Mr. Imagination asked the kids, ‘What do you think that sound was?’ Some of them said it was a snake, cat or somebody calling at him. He said no to these guesses. Then, suddenly, one kid said, ‘It was your imagination!’ to which Mr. Imagination replied, ‘You are absolutely right.’”

As Norman Girardot writes in his forthcoming book, Imagining Mr. Imagination:
“Mr. Imagination dedicated himself to making art that would give meaning and self-worth to all those curious and courageous enough to embrace the transformative power of their own imaginations. He died knowing he would not see the creation of his great dream for an Angel Garden of the Imagination, intended for children around the world. Now with the creation of Intuit’s Mr. Imagination Educational Studio, we will finally, collectively and creatively, make Mr. I’s dying dream a lasting reality. Somewhere in the Egyptian heavens, Mr. Imagination is smiling and muttering ‘Peace and Love.’”

In 2005
, Material Culture commissioned Mr. Imagination to construct one of his iconic THRONES on-site. The carved wood giant chair itself was a piece commissioned from woodworkers in Ghana, resulting in a unique African/American collaboration. Eventually, we sold it in one of our auctions, and it was acquired by The Museum of Everything in London.